Originating from the patio spritz cart at Hazel in Washington, D.C., the Hipster is part Spritz, part Shandy and part...well, logic-defying. It’s a curious hodgepodge of ingredients, to say the least, layering an Italian aperitivo, orangecello, soda, orange bitters, salt, and a few ounces of IPA on ice in a hurricane glass—an unexpected marriage of ingredients at first glance, but one that works in ways not dissimilar to fusion in the culinary world. The Hipster works because it bridges a gap between two beloved cocktail styles, all the while skirting the technical criteria of both classic builds.
Spritzes generally involve three classic ingredients: an aperitivo or amaro, sparkling wine and a splash of club soda. The term “Shandy” is typically used to describe a combination of beer and some form of a citrusy drink, such as lemon-lime soda (or “lemonade,” if you’re in Europe, South Africa, New Zealand or Australia). Back in 2018, Hazel’s then-spirits manager Nick Farrell transformed his go-to drink order—an ice-filled pint glass with a shot of aperitivo and a canned beer poured on top—into this bright and complex cocktail that’s one ingredient short of being a Spritz, essentially swapping beer in place of sparkling wine, which pairs up with the rest of the ingredients (a citrusy soda) placing its other foot in Shandy territory. The pinch of salt is key here, softening any hard, acidic notes and highlighting all the things our palate loves about citrus fruits.
Call it what you will, but after you’ve taken your first sip, the Hipster might just become your new favorite cocktail of the summer. Try your hand at making it yourself with this adapted version of the original Hazel recipe.
- 1 ounce Caffo Mezzodi L’Aperitivo Italiano (can substitute Aperol liqueur)
- 1 ounce orangecello
- 1 ounce club soda, chilled
- 3 dashes orange bitters
- 1 dash salt
- 3 ounces IPA-style beer, chilled
- Garnish: orange wheel
Add all the ingredients except the club soda and the beer into a hurricane glass over ice, and stir.
Add the club soda and the beer and stir briefly and gently to combine.
Garnish with a skewered orange wheel.